Monday 21 August 2017

Erdogan healing wounds with Putin on Russian visit

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in Russia. Photo: Reuters
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in Russia. Photo: Reuters

Roland Oliphant

Vowing to restore an "axis of friendship" between Ankara and Moscow, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed yesterday to increase defence co-operation, amid a growing rift between Turkey and the West.

Speaking in St Petersburg on his first overseas trip since facing down an attempted coup last month, Mr Erdogan thanked his "dear friend" Mr Putin and said the two countries would restore diplomatic and economic ties that were shattered when Turkey shot down a Russian military jet over Syria last year.

"The fact Mr Putin called me the next day after the coup attempt was a very strong psychological factor," he said at a joint press conference. "The axis of friendship between Moscow and Ankara will be restored."

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